By johnarthur

Private Kiteboard lesson or Group Kiteboarding Lesson ?

What lesson is best for you …. Private or Group lesson?

Any lesson with the professional, certified, licensed and insured instructors, at Manta Wind & Water Sports, is the right lesson to get you started in the sport of kiteboarding, aka: kitesurfing.  The reason we say this is based on years of experience teaching to individuals and groups. We provide you with the essential experience to determine you best path for continuing education in any of our lesson programs.

No one is good at kiteboarding after one lesson. It will take more practice with the equipment on your own, or in continuing lessons if that is your path.  We show you what you need to know to feel confident in your path to improving your skills and ensure maximum safety in this extreme sport.



Private kiteboard lessons

  •     Customized training based on your abilities and comfort.
  •     More time flying the kite and practicing skills, ensure greater confidence.
  •     Immediate answers to your questions.
  •     Fewer lessons needed to achieve your goals
  •     Higher initial cost for lesson, but fewer lessons needed overall.
  •     Greater chance you may get to board riding skills in a 4hr lesson.
  •     Almost all students feel ready to purchase gear and work on skills after the lesson.


Group Kiteboard lessons

  •     Slower pace for learning and more time to observe and learn from others.
  •     Lower initial expense, but great chance you will need more lessons.
  •     Easier to get a lesson on weekends in the summer months.
  •     Greater exposure to common errors we make while learning to kite
  •     Good chance you will have other to train with after the lesson
  •     Slimmer chance you will get to the board riding skills in a 4hr lesson.
  •     Half the students feel ready to purchase gear and work on skills after the lesson

Bottom line:

Any lesson is going to be a good lesson to get you started in the sport.

Worry less about the expense. Don’t worry how much time before you’ll be riding a board … if you learn to fly the kite well … board riding will come quickly and easily.

So … Sign up today and get your kiteboarding adventure started. Kiteboarding really is one of the easiest and fastest sports to get good at.   It will offer a lifetime of fitness and fun.

Book a lesson today !




By johnarthur

Trainer Kites :

Trainer kites are smaller, and a different design, than the kites used in kiteboarding.  The idea is to purchase one before you take professional lessons, and spend some time on your own developing basic flying skills and confidence with those skills.

We offer 2 sizes of trainer kites to our customers,  3meter and 3.5 meter size models. The 3m size kite is the most common size trainer for those who want to train in lighter wind speeds, ( 4-18 mph ).   The smaller 1-2m size trainer kites are used by smaller people of for those practicing in stronger wind speeds.

We have found that the trainer kites do build confidence in those students that practice with them before taking professional instruction.  However, we also find that prior trainer kite experience does not ensure you will perform better with the 4 line inflatable kite that is used in the kiteboarding lessons.

Flying a trainer kite is fun and does build your confidence before taking the kiteboarding lesson. However, Flying the trainer kite is not going to teach you to fly the 4 line inflatable kite used in the lessons. It only teaches you to fly the trainer kite.

Bottom line:  If you can afford to buy a trainer kite and use it before taking lessons, then do so. However, If you can not afford to buy a trainer kite, don’t worry …  the majority of students do just fine in the lessons without prior training kite experience.



By johnarthur

Split Kiteboards … what’s the take ?

Split boards have been out for several year in some form or another.  Until recently , they were custom made to order and they were very expensive. In the last two years, technology and materials have dramatically improved and now the Splitboards are incredible! They ride great, they are super strong, they are light weight, they assemble in seconds, they look great.  You have to try it to believe it.  Get yours today.

The two most popular designs available, are using the highest quality production techniques, materials and are built to last. These new designs assemble with little or not tools in seconds and they ride great.

After lots of evaluation, we have decided to carry the following 2 brands of Split boards:

Nobile -NHP Split   …. $1199










FlySurfer -FlySplit “M” … $1099


Both of these boards assemble in seconds and they ride like any other high performance board. The weight of these boards is so light , you can’t tell its a split board. The durability of these boards is as strong as most other one piece boards.

Our experience with the, FlySurfer and Nobile, split boards leads us to suggest,  they can even be chosen as your only kiteboard, for beginners to advanced riders alike.

If you travel a lot and/or you don’t want to break the bank buying multiple boards, or pay extra airline charges for oversized bags … then consider getting one of these Split Kiteboards.

Manta stocks and sells the following split boards.

Nobile NHP Split in the 138cm and the 134cm sizing … complete with footstraps and fin set for only … $1199

FlySurfer FlySplit “M” in the 134cm sizing … complete with footstraps and fin set for only … $1099

We also carry the Nobile Split board travel bag … to hold you split board, kite, harness & control bar … $179


Feel free to contact us with questions.

Thank you ,

John Arthur – Manta Wind & Water Sports


By johnarthur

Kiteboarding Sites in San Diego

Where to to kiteboard in San Diego ?

#1  Kite Beach – “Enchanted Cove”


Please help us keep our access to kiteboarding in San Diego.   

Be the best example of kiteboarding to everyone you encounter. 

Beginners to Advanced kite boarders will enjoy Enchanted Cove, on Fiesta Island, San Diego 92109. 

All lessons and kiteboard training in San Diego are performed here. Enchanted Cove offers flat, ocean fed, bay water, surrounded by sandy beaches with limited  hazards.

This is the best place to come for beginners to intermediate kiters, as well as flat water junkies, freestylers, and hydrofoil kiters.  I ride here a lot, the flat water makes for great freestyle tricks and easy learning. The water is warmer than the open ocean … no wetsuit required in summer and early autumn. Surrounded by land so, self rescues are easy.  Fun place!

San Diego is not known for strong wind … we are actually the light wind capital of California. So, leave your 5-7m kites at home.

Wind speed is usually blowing only 9 to 16 mph, during the summer months ( 8-14 knots).    West and North West are the best wind directions for Enchanted Cove. Avoid NE, S and SE winds … they are extremely gusty and very hazardous for kiting in this area.  On a good day, wind will be  blowing WNW 11-19mph.

Learn to keep your kite flying, even when the wind shifts or drops … that is the secret to your success at this location. There is often a wind shadow near western beach and relaunching is never a sure thing.

You must wear a kite leash when you ride in San Diego.  There are children in the area and at the park on the East end of the bay. You do not want your kite to get away and blow into them or the freeway immediately to the east.

Kite size is based on rider size, skill and board type … but we are usually riding 12m-17m kites. Smaller riders usually ride 9-12m kites.

The bay is connected to the ocean and affected by tidal changes. No waves, and very small wind chop. Water temperature is 68-72 F in the summer and drops to 55-63 F, in the winter.  A 3mm surf suit is good for October- April.  A 3mm Shorty is good for May – July.   A swim suit is perfect from July – September.

We suggest you wear surf booties all year to protect yourself from cuts that are possible from shells, clams and glass in the sand and shoreline. String Rays are present year round … so shuffle your feet when walking in the water.

Please Launch and land your kite near the water line and avoid possible contact with the street and vehicles traveling along that street. Keep your kite over the water when walking with it.

You should know how to safely “self launch” and “self land” your kite when you kite in San Diego. If you don’t know how to do this, contact us and or take a lesson on how to do it.

Beginners and Kiters in training, must stay downwind of more experienced kiters, and always avoid congested areas on the water and shoreline.

Please stay at least 100 ft / 33 meters away from all beach and water users and give up the right of way when ever possible.  In general, do not fly your kite over anyone or anything,  and set up away from beach users.

You must respect the space and safety of all beach and water users at all times … public safety is priority #1.

If you blow onto the small island east of the riding area , do not walk onto the island (endangered plants on the island).  Instead, stay on the western shore line and walk south, to the end, then swim off.

Don’t kite if the beach is to crowded to safely set up, launch, enter, exit, or land your kite.

There are no services or facilities on the island, except for the occasional port-a-potty.  Bring your own water, snacks and first aid kit.

Do not leave valuables on the beach or in your vehicle and lock it when you are away.

Please set up and launch  on the south western half of the cove when the prevailing wind is blowing ( W or NW)  … do NOT set up where the wind can blow you towards the youth camp or other water users.

Do NOT ride near, nor land on the beach on the Eastern Beach where the “Youth Camp” is located.  The youth camp is private property. They do not want us to endanger the children nor their property. The youth camp beach is closed to kiteboarding activities all year.  If the youth camp has kayakers or other boats out on the water. Please stay south of them and give them lots of room. They are children and they do not know how to interact with kites.  They are only out for 30 minutes at a time , then they go back to shore.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read though this and welcome to San Diego.

Happy and Safe Kiteboarding.

By johnarthur

Split kiteboards for Travel

Looking for an easy to pack kiteboard that won’t let you down?

Take advantage of the newest boards designed to pack small for convenient travel.  Fly Split “M” and  the Nobile “NHP Split” kiteboards.  Both boards are extremely well constructed and do they ride great.

These boards are designed to fit inside a large “checked bag” or suit case and they really do go together in seconds.

I ride both types of  boards in light wind and in strong wind conditions as well as surf.  They excel in performance and comfort.  They are well worth the extra cost due to the high tech construction that lets them feel and ride like a one piece board.

Get your Split kiteboards today.

Check out our selection:

By johna

Kiteboarding Vacation in the Cook Islands


We just got back from a wonderful trip to the Cook Islands.  We arrived in Rarotonga for 3 days of adventure and kiteboarding. It is such and amazing place. Our hotel was perfectly located for multiple adventures. Snorkeling, SUP, Beach walk, Lagoon tour, Sunbath, Beverages, Kiteboarding, Sailing, island hiking and more. We hooked up with the local kite and water sports operator of the low down and guidance for kiteboarding on Rarotonga. They are wonderful people and they know their stuff.

The island was very clean and the visitors and the locals were so friendly … it makes you want to move there. Rarotonga is 2 thumbs up. We traveled around the island in the afternoon and evenings. Local island micro brewery has a wonderful selection of beers to taste and purchase. The island community is very hospitable and exhibits a young fresh attitude.

on the third day we took and Island hopper jet to the island of Aitutaka, aka: Honeymoon Island.  This has got to be one of the most beautiful places on earth. The islands ocean lagoon is breathtaking.  Words can not describe how beautiful it is.  The hotels we stayed in where beach bungalow style units, and they were wonderful and clean. The service was great and the atmosphere was relaxing. The food is wonderful and fresh with the island theme and plenty of fresh seafood.

The watersports operator we booked with, Quentin, took us under his guidance and made sure we had the time of our lives.   Snorkeling with giant clams, huge Napoleon fish and hundreds of reef fish filled the warm, clear, water, that is the playground of Aitutaki.  Kiteboarding is off the charts beautiful, with white sand below the crystal waters that are only waist deep for easy entry and riding. Flat water riding in paradise with a bbq on sight and a relaxation zone to shade yourselves between sessions.  When there is no wind , the watersports operator was quick to offer wakeboarding as the sport.

I will cut this short for now… Way to many good things to talk about.  Details to follow.

Cook Islands – Rarotonga and Aitutaki … Must Do this trip.

Visit: and get linked to the travel company that has the best program and prices.  “Outdoor Travel Adventures“.

By johnarthur

My harness is riding up !

Is your waist harness sliding up to your armpits?

Is your seat harness giving you crotch squeeze?

Providing your harness is actually the right size for you … the first thing you should look for, is your stance.

If you are standing tall while you fly a kite, your harness will always try to slide up.

We shouldn’t stand tall when we fly kites, we should try to relax back, and counter balance against the pull of the kite.

Fix that … and you will see the harness is not being pulled up your abdomen, its actually being pulled away from your abdomen.

Is your neck getting sore? Same thing … Don’t stand tall, relax back and your neck will not have to look up.

Are you falling foreword when the kite pulls?

Same thing … relax back



How do you Relax Back?
Hips Forward, Knees bent, shoulder blades back, slight back bend against your harness.



Give it a try.


John Arthur

By johnarthur

Skills to Practice

Time To Practice Kite Skills !

Now that the kite boarding season is fast approaching, It’s time to pull that gear out and develop the fundamental skills that maximize safety and success, and minimize on frustration and risk.

These skills can be practiced in much lighter wind than you think.  You can perform land practice with most kites in 5- 10mph winds.  Make sure you make good choices and practice in Slow winds,  with Soft terrain and plenty of Open Space and with Shoes and a Helmet.  

First Rule: Understand how your kites safetey system functions and make sure the control bar is designed to work with your kite.

Second Rule: Seek out and obtain professional, experienced instruction when ever possible.  or

  1.    Practice using the kites safety system to perform “Self Landings”
  2.    Practice various methods of  “Self Launch” that work for your kite.
  3.    Practice Flying your kite with one hand , then the other hand.
  4.    Practice Flying by Feel , rather than rely solely on Sight.
  5.    Practice Saving your kite from all falls or crashes.
  6.    Practice Walking cross wind while flying your kite.
  7.    Practice “Touch Downs” in launch/landing area with the kite.
  8.    Practice 3 methods of “Relaunching” your kite.


Some Common kiteboarding terms defined:

  •    Emergency De-power = Kill Kite = Intentionally Disable Flight
  •    Self Land = Kill kite without damage to kite or others and be re-launch ready if you desire.
  •    Self Launch = safely perform an Initial launch of your kite without the aid of others.
  •    Re-Launch = safely make kite take off after it has fallen or crashed.
  •    Take Off = When you intentionally permit a kite to fly.
  •    Touch Down = When kite is resting in the landing zone and bar is fully sheeted out.
  •    Landing = When you intentionally disable flight.
  •    Suicide Launch = When Flight is initiated aggressively or without control.
  •    Sheet Out = lower kites power by moving bar away or by shortening the front lines with a trim strap.
  •    Release Kite = Eject from the kite when all other safety options have failed and your life is in danger.
  •    Self Rescue = Getting back to shore with kite attached to you, but not actually flying.  (Swim, Tow, Sail, Drift, Etc.)




Remember:  The more skilled you are with your kite, the safer you can be and the quicker you will get good in this sport.

By johnarthur

Tips for Self Starters

Tips for you self starters:


Secrets to learn faster and safer:

Rule #1:      The Kite is #1 … it must not fall or crash EVER!   ( The kite is only allowed to go down, when YOU want it down.)

Rule #2:     It’s all about Kite Skill !    ( Be Great with the Kite and Riding will be Safer and Easier.)

Rule #3:     Stay away from people and hazards!   ( You are never as good as you think you are … Don’t expose others to possible dangers.)

Rule #4:     Know how to Kill your kite!  You must understand how your kite’s safety system works, and be proficient at using it.

Rule #5:     Don’t go further from shore than you are willing to swim with a kite attached to you!


Getting Started:

Get a 3m Trainer kite and take it out to an open area away from people and hazards.

Practice flying the 3m trainer kite in light winds at first (<10mph).

Get really good at flying and looping  the trainer kite, no falls or crashes ever again.

Get really good at one handed flying, and flying by feel, more than by sight.

Get really good at KILLING the kite and relaunching the kite.

Use the kite to help you back get up from a seated position.

Get really good at saving the kite from falls in light winds.

Get really good at calming the kite down in stronger winds.

Take a lesson from a qualified kiteboarding instructor.  (See my other blog on how to tell if you have a good instructor at, )

Make sure the instructor teaches you all the following Land Skills:

Kite Set up /Self Launch /Self Land, De-power /Emergency De-power (Kill) / Assisted Launch / Assisted Landing /Kite Re-Launch /Kite Control / One Handed Flying.

Buy the real kite, in the correct size for you, and your environment. Then practice what you learned with it on land, in light winds, (<10mph) at first, and as you get better, <15 mph … for at least  7-10 days of practice.

Take a 2nd lesson from the same instructor go to the water.    (Remember Rule #1)

Make sure the instructor teaches  you the following Water Skills:

Water Relaunch / Emergency De-power /Self Rescue / All Body dragging skills / Board handling / Water Starts / Water Exits / Right of Ways / Etiquette.

Go to the water when the winds are just > 10 mph  to practice what you learned. Avoid winds over 18mph until your skilled.


Guidelines for Safer Water Skills:

Select a safe Training Area:  Entry and Exit points,  Launch and Landing area , and Stay downwind of other beach and water users.

Train with side shore winds or side on shore winds. Do not train in off shore or on shore winds.

Dont go to the water is the kite is not flying well.   ( Don’t be Foolish.  If the winds are to light, water skills will not be productive)

Don’t go farther from shore than you are willing and able to swim with a kite attached to you.

Practice self rescue with your kite in shallow water close to shore before you venture out from shore.

Learn to body drag well , before trying to ride a board.

Body Dragging skills are actually 4 skills per drag:  Enter water, Drag, Return to shore, Return to starting point …. All Without Losing Control of the Kite.

Body Drag Skills you Must learn:  On Belly / UpRight / One Handed / UpWind / With Board in Hand / With Board on Feet.

Can you perform all the Body Dragging skills without losing control or letting the kite fall or crash ???


KiteBoard Riding Skills:     …….   To Be Continued:

I don’t want your ego to over ride your skill level … Go Practice the Basics First!





By johnarthur

How can you tell if you have a quality kiteboarding instructor?

It takes time to become a good kiteboarding instructor.  

I’m not talking about the years spent riding. I’m talking about the time actually spent teaching this sport.

Simple truths about good kiteboarding instructors:

  1.   The best instructors love to teach. They don’t burnout and they always want to improve.
  2.   No one is good at teaching  kite board lessons, until they’ve taught at least 100 lessons.
  3.   Kite board instructors who taught kiteboarding in strong winds, don’t instantly know how to teach in light winds, and visa versa.
  4.   A good instructor will teach their students from a beginners mindset … your instincts are wrong for kite boarding. Good instructors will train the student how to over-ride those instincts with skills training, rather than words alone.
  5.   Good kite board instructors will only teach, what Is Safe to do.  Not what they Feel is safe because they’re with you.
  6.   A good instructor exemplifies what they teach … Safe Actions, Good Manors, and Advanced riding Skills.

Warning  Signs:

  1.   Does your instructor spend more time flying the kite than you do? 
  2.   Does your instructor have trouble keeping the kite flying?
  3.   Does your instructor fail to give you a helmet and lifejacket?
  4.   Does your instructor allow you to drag/ride towards other people?
  5.   Did your instructor fail to teach you how to Kill the kite?
  6.   Does your instructor say they’re certified, but their not?
  7.   Does your instructors car look like they actually use it as a home?
  8.   Did your instructor tie a rope to the back of your harness?
  9.   Did your instructor ever get rescued by their own student?
  10.   Does your instructor have trouble riding the board ?
  11.   Does your instructor only have one size of kite for teaching lessons?
  12.   Does your instructor spend a lot of lesson time relaunching the kite?
  13.   Did your instructor tell you to wear a board leash?
  14.   Does your instructor have more students than 2 students in the water at a time?
  15.   Does your instructor get warned about safety issues, from other instructors on the beach?
  16.   Did your instructor forget to have you sign a waiver?

Good Signs:

  1.   Your instructor has a valid business license for that city.
  2.   Your instructor is listed on the IKO or PASA or BKSA  web site as an instructor , and is in good standing.
  3.   Your instructor has been teaching full time for more than 1 year in your environment.
  4.   Your instructor uses newer gear and has other sizes of kites for use in the lesson.
  5.   Your instructor makes you wear a helmet and  life jacket during the lesson.
  6.   Your instructor is currently certified and insured to teach kiteboading.
  7.   Your instructor has an informative and original looking web site.
  8.   Your instructors priority is your safety and the safety of others.
  9.   Your instructor is one of the best riders in your area and they adhere to safe practices.
  10.   Your instructor is nice and patient, but they motivate you to practice skills on your own time as well.
  11.   Your instructor returns your calls and answers your questions freely.
  12.   You are actually getting good at flying the kite and keeping it flying.
  13.   You actually understand what you are being taught and why.
  14.   You actually have confidence in yourself and the skills you’ve learned.


Good luck and be safe!